Greetings! Ukraine became a warzone just four months ago. Thousands of apartment buildings have been destroyed by Russian shelling. Streets are littered with burned cars and trees. Windows are shattered. Homes are nothing but piles of rubble.
The lives of Ukrainians have been turned upside down. Millions have fled the country, leaving family members and all of their belongings behind. Millions more have remained in safe zones in Western Ukraine waiting for the war to end.
But, since the outset of this war, one shining light in these dark times has been HART’s extensive network of church partners on the ground serving those in need.
But the needs are still overwhelming. Recognizing this, a faithful HART donor has made funds available to ‘match’ the following programs…
Both of these programs will be matched
until midnight Sunday, July 10, 2022
up to $25,000 for each program!
Ukraine Crisis – Refugee Aid
Match amount: $25,000
Summer Camp Programs
Match amount: $25,000
Summer Camps – REALLY?
This spring, we debated whether to have an online auction to raise funds for summer camps. The consensus among our Team was that because of the war, refugees, and the chaos in the country, summer camp programs would be the last thing on the minds of churches in Ukraine.
To confirm this, we surveyed a number of our partner churches for their feedback only to find that many of them expressed a desire to hold Summer Camps this year, especially day camps.
WHY SUMMER CAMPS? Our partner churches responded with heartfelt answers to this question:
“There are refugee children in our town who are scared and emotionally devastated. We want to serve these kids so that they can feel the practical love and care of Christians. God has given us this great opportunity to share His love with them.”
“Ukraine’s children have endured four months of war, terrifying emergency sirens, running to air raid shelters, the bursting of bombs, and living in the basement of buildings for weeks. Some kids have lost family members, their friends, or their homes. The trauma has been devastating, and they need to heal. One of the best places to begin this healing process is at camp.”
“We are living in a very difficult time because of the war.
Constant air-raid sirens and fear that missiles will hit something are today’s reality. Everyone is tense – there is no work and no money, and there is always news from the front, which influences people. Some men have been drafted and are now at the front lines, which hurts. We can see that many children have been impacted negatively because of this present life. We believe that at this time, it is necessary to influence the younger generation and share the Gospel with the refugee children, the children supported by HART, and everyone in our area. We sincerely hope that there will be the opportunity to hold a camp in this difficult yet blessed time. For our part, we do not have the funds to hold a camp, so we hope for the Lord and cooperation with Hart.”
“We want to distract kids from their terrible reality and give them the opportunity to get to know God in Bible lessons, have a good time with friends, participate in Christian plays, sing, pray, and play sports.”
“Many children have already asked us if there will be a camp this summer, so we decided that regardless of the situation and air-raid sirens, which are heard quite often, we would hold a camp to distract children somehow and give them the opportunity to relax. We will be deeply grateful to you for your financial support, which will allow us to hold camps.”
“Many kids missed camps for the last two years because of Covid. We have an opportunity to give them a diversion from the pandemic and the war and bless them with the happiest time of the year.”
“If we can bring a little bit of their childhood back to them, forgetting about bombs and sirens, and just enjoying nature, exercise, kids’ activities, and new friends – this is all great therapy for them.”
This clip is from a summer camp that was held last week in Western Ukraine by one of our Church partners.
Update on LUDMILLA:
Unfortunately, the prognosis for Ludmilla is not very favorable. She and her parents spent several months in Germany getting the proper treatment for her bone cancer. She was progressing exceptionally well, and even the doctors considered her improvement a miracle. However, a couple of months after returning to Ukraine, the cancer came back – even worse than it was previously. She is experiencing quite a bit of pain now. PLEASE keep Ludmilla in your prayers.
Update on OLYA
We know that many of you have been praying for Olya too. Here is the latest news: she is still cooking for the soldiers on the front lines. For now, her situation is OK, and she is safe.
Thanks to YOU, we raised funds
to renovate Olya’s house. However, the local church where she was baptized wants to help this family in a special way. Instead of trying to fix Olya’s dilapidated house outside of their town, the church decided (along with YOUR funds) to help them purchase a small home in the town, close to the church and schools. They are actively looking to buy a house right now. Olya’s mother and daughters are excited about this. Thank you for your prayers and support for Olya! Please pray for her protection as she is at the front lines in this war.
Here are specific prayer points that can help guide our prayers for the situation in Ukraine:
- Pray for and ask to see God’s glory amid this great struggle. God often uses dire situations to draw people to himself. Pray that He would be glorified through the people of Ukraine who are following him.
- Pray for God’s peace to be a source of strength for the thousands of Ukrainian workers/volunteers who will have opportunities to share with others about God’s love.
- Pray for God’s protection over Christian volunteers. Ask God for their physical and spiritual protection — ask Him to help people seek the truth during the conflict.
- Ask God for comfort. Many families lost fathers and sons during Russia’s first invasion in 2014, and now to have to go through this tragic new war is overwhelming for most families.
- Ask God to intervene. Pray for wisdom for world leaders. Pray that God would move in their hearts and guide their steps and plans.
- Pray for President Zelensky and the leaders of Ukraine to know God’s truth and peace and be transformed by his Holy Spirit so that they would seek to lead their country in the way of peace.
- Ask that this conflict would open doors of opportunities for the gospel. Pray that He would make his name known across Ukraine, Russia, and all the European countries that refugees are fleeing to due to this conflict.